Saturday, November 8, 2008

Cranberry Crawl

This week was wonderful and a constant test and strain on good will, I think, and kindness. After the election on Tuesday, maybe even before, Fi and my kind-heartedness was certainly tested a few times-people being less than accepting of others' views (especially when it came to hearing about people talking shit about Republicans and those who voted Republican which is really, really not cool and not what our country is about!), people intentionally and without basis talking shit about me, students that felt a little checked out in the classroom and weather that grew cold because, let's face it, this is Missouri and it can't be warm forever. I have to say, though, I imagine this time in NY is wwwwaaaaaay colder and happened faster than here in the midwest. Just another bonus about the center of the country.

But this week was restorative, too. We had a friend, an acquaintance to me and a friend to D, really, write a super kind and heartening email, another friend that gave an impeccable reading who I had the privilege to introduce, a president we believe in and campaigned for, and a strong week on Fi's play-practice front. We remembered that although there are mean-spirited people in the world, we have chosen to surround ourselves with the great ones-the ones that write emails of encouragement and memoirs that paint pictures of living despite the darkness of life. We have friends that make us smile in the hallways or labs that we run into them in and friends that encourage us to "keep running" even when we're not so sure we ever wanted to start running to begin with. For that, we are blessed and we know it, which makes our fortune tenfold. Although this is a vague explanation of our week, at best, I just want to thank those of our readers who have and do make a positive impact in our lives, particularly, and the world because of it and their many other daily kindnesses.

Because of the rough week, I was not at my happiest, we had a too-heavy lunch at the Indian restaurant in town yesterday. I immediately came home and passed out. I barely made it to the car before I passed out. Albeit, this came directly after a forty-minute bike ride and a fifty-minute yoga class, but it was ridiculous how barely I got to the car before sleep took over. Consequently, when I awoke, I didn't feel a whole lot better, but had an introduction to read for Sarah, so I headed back to school-ready to roll and hopeful that I'd feel better.

No luck.

After the reading, we came home, had a light dinner and Fi went to play practice while I read and, eventually, jumped into bed no later than 10pm. This was problematic. We had originally decided to run a Cranberry Crawl 5k this morning with some friends, but since I didn't feel like I'd trained all that much, I told Liz (who planned to run it with me) that I was opting out and we discussed the possibility of going out doing the complete opposite of what running would do for our bodies: drinking. However, our super-runner friend Beth didn't want to hear of it and when I arose this morning, after having not felt well and not having been able to go out, I performed some yoga positions in the living room, dressed for a cold day and ran the 5k.

Posing before the race: Me, Matt, Beth

Amazingly enough, I placed third in our age group! I don't think anyone could've been more surprised than me. There were so many hills and I was completely unprepared for them. My calves have been aching lately and hills are certainly not good for the pain on the calves.

Beth came in first in our age group-because she's awesome. Matt, another local friend of ours, came in first in his age group-he took off over the last hill and all I had was a vague memory of him having run beside me at some point. I think I was the major stunner in the group, being that I came in last out of all three of us. I didn't expect to place, but am proud of myself a little bit for doing so. We each got to pick from an array of kick ass prizes. One of my weaknesses is "Breast Cancer" anything. As soon as someone tells me I'll be promoting that cause in some way, I immediately magnetize to however I'll be doing so (my grandma overcame breast cancer twice and both Fi's mom and mine had cancer issues. As a result, we are keenly supportive of this cause and all cancer research overall). In this case, I magnetized to the Breast Cancer Awareness runners belt. I think, to those of us who grew up in the eighties, "fanny pack" is a more appropriate term. It was great, though. Nice and pink and full of pockets and water bottle holders. Fi and I checked it out together (see below) and we approve!
What this race did teach me, though, is that I should've entered Caitlin's Athleta contest ( I have the worst possible winter/cold-weather running gear and no coinage to drop on new gear. After the race, I raided Target's kid section and pounced on their XL girl stuff and voila! I'm ready for next week's off-track, 4-mile race! I spent no more than $28.00 and highly recommend this cost-effective way of getting gear if you can't win, or are too lazy to enter a contest where you can win, super awesome running gear.

Overall, we felt pretty happy about our overall success and I was thrilled Fi came to support us (not that anyone who knows him would expect any differently).
Matt, by the way, chose some super awesome running socks. Not pictured are our "spouse/fi", though, without them we'd have no pics and no screaming from the side lines! And when we came in, we could hear both Amanda, Dustin and, even, a professor from our Ph.D. program and his family who came to watch his brother run the 10k.

When we got home-after Target and Panera for lunch (love their pick two! I especially love their amazing broccoli soup!), I crashed for three hours. Does anyone have a suggestion for 1-how to not become/succumb to sleepiness when I eat carbs and 2-how to make sure my immune system is in best possible shape so I do not get sick in the midst of the running season I'm not embarking on??? I'd be forever in your debt for advice like that.

After the race. Exhausted!

Fi did not compete this week because of me. I couldn't bare to have him running in the cold this week. He's been swimming and working on his upper body and endurance and I, like a paranoid mom or something, didn't think it was wise for him to embark on a 5k without having run in weeks (he did a mile and a half a week or two back with me, but that's not enough training for a longer run!). But, he was my motivation. My whole back back up those treacherous hills, I thought of him at the finish line cheering me on...and the race got so much easier.

I love you, Fi!



  1. GREAT RACE!!! i love the pic of you guys in the grass.

  2. Definitely one of my best 2008 memories. Thanks for it. :)

  3. I bet you are glad showed up and ran! Congrats on the 3rd place on a tough course. It is funny how we often can surprise ourselves. Even if we don't run well on some days, the races are always a fun time and good cause. Cross Country Xtreme should be a good time too!